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Mad Bullets

For: iPhone   Also on: Android, iPad


Product: Mad Bullets | Publisher: IsTom Games | Developer: IsTom Games | Format: iPhone | Genre: Arcade, Shooter | Players: 1 | Version: US | App version: 1.2
Mad Bullets iPhone, thumbnail 1
Shooting galleries and the video games based on them will never go out of style.

From pegging a cardboard squirrel right between the eyes to attempting to shoot that awful dog from Duck Hunt, there's something endlessly satisfying about playing gallery games.

Maybe it's the necessity for precision and skill. Or maybe we enjoy feeling good about ourselves when we outsmart cut-outs propped up on sticks.

Either way, Mad Bullets demonstrates the appeal of shooting games with goofy cartoon exteriors and sharp controls.

It's not a deep experience by any means, but there's tons of stuff to shoot down in a single run, and that's all you really need from the genre.

Pistols at High Noon

The action is on-rails. When you start a session you're slowly walked through a randomly-generated gallery boasting a Wild West theme. You move through streets lined with saloons and jails, ghost-town shacks, and cheesy faux-Mexican scenery.

Every inch of Mad Bullets is covered with cardboard cut-out creeps that are determined to make you take a dirt nap.

There's the typical gunmen, of course, but there are also syringe-wielding mad doctors and kids armed with slingshots that fire angry birds at you.

Even the local undertaker has a bone to pick with you for some reason. Maybe it's because you have the audacity to still be amongst the living.

Don't gun down the good guys, mister!

Innocents get mixed up in the carnage too. There are plenty of bystanders, and town drunks that don't understand there's a time and a place to go staggering out into the street. Some restrained onlookers can have their chains shot off for extra points.

IAPs Explained
Mad Bullets lets you buy upgrades with "sacks," as in sacks of coins. Sacks are earned by shooting moneybags in-game. They're everywhere, but can be difficult to accumulate in the heat of battle.

Sacks are used to buy power-ups, including a larger magazine size, faster reload times, and temporary invincibility. The in-game store lets players purchase sacks in different denominations, including 2,500 sacks for £2.99 / $4.99, 10,000 sacks for £6.99 / $9.99, or 50,000 sacks for £10.49 / $14.99.

Players can also purchase permanent game upgrades like ad removal for £1.49 / $1.99, or a sack doubler for £1.99 / $2.99.
These "rescue shots" obviously take precision (unless you want to have a dead cardboard lass lying in the dusty street for whatever reason, you sick pup).

Thankfully, firing your piece is as easy as tapping your target. The in-game targeting is precise enough to blast a lock off a poor damsel's chains.

As pretty as a desert sunset

Mad Bullets offers tons of supplementary targets in addition to its grungy banditos. There are crates everywhere, many of which hold power-ups and money - but some of which also hold bombs. Needless to say, bullets and bombs don't mix. There are also varmints a-plenty to gun down.

Despite its shallow, straight-forward mechanics (there are only a small handful of scenes to work through, though the randomly-generated levels help mix things up a bit), the game's bright, cartoony visuals help keep the action fun and amusing.

Every scene and character is lively, and the use of cardboard cut-outs keeps violence at a minimum.

Mad Bullets does have one shady trait that stands out like a scar across a hero's eye: when you lose, you can watch an ad to continue.

Some players may not be impressed with this option. To be fair, you can only use it once per session, and you can always opt out.

Though limited in scenery and upgrades, Mad Bullets is a nifty little shooter. Give it a try if you're nostalgic for silly '50s-style galleries, pil-grum.
Mad Bullets
Reviewer photo
Nadia Oxford | 22 July 2014
Though a bit limited in content, Mad Bullets is a bright, light-hearted shooting gallery game with precise controls
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